So, there's this guy I went to college with who had the biggest foot fetish I've ever personally known of, to date. He stared at feet. He constantly critiqued feet. And when he spoke of them, he described feet with the same type of lust and affinity that other guys talk about our T&A. I truly had never seen anything like it. To take things over the top, his favorite kind of feet were pedicured ones that—wait for it—were sweaty (What. In. The. World?!). Yeah, I feel like a lot of you are staring at your monitor (or cell phone) and thinking to yourself, "I already know this is some white dude." But nope. He was very much so Black. A proud Nupe who was very active in Black organizations on the yard, in fact. As a wise person once said, "There are all kinds of ways to be Black."
Anyway, I'm not sure why I didn't inquire more about his borderline obsession with feet at the time. It's not that I have a natural aversion to them or anything. It's just that, other than when it's time to get a pedicure of my own, I don't really give feet much thought. Plus, it wasn't until I worked with a porn ministry and learned more about all of the fetishes that are out here in the world (if you're curious about what the current most common ones are, click here) that I ever got why people have fetishes in the first place. While some folks have them due to being on the spectrum of some sort of mental illness or their fetish is PTSD-related to some form of trauma, others dabble in fetishism as a coping mechanism (for instance, as a way to deal with stress).
Still, there are those who simply have a very strong preference for things that might seem "odd" when it comes to what sexually arouses them. Believe it or not, one of the most popular "arousals" is feet. Here's why.
So, What’s the Foot Fetish Thing All About, Anyway?
Let's begin with what a foot fetish is (the technical term is podophilia, by the way) by definition. It's when someone is sexually interested in feet. It can be the entire foot or a part of it like the ankles or toes. While some people are drawn to feet in their completely natural state, others' interest are piqued when a person's toes are polished or they notice someone who has a toe ring or ankle bracelet on. Then there are those who can literally get off while massaging a person's feet or even licking or sucking on them.
As far as how common foot fetishes are, it's kind of hard to tell. Dr. Justin Lehmiller, a research fellow at The Kinsey Institute, once said in an interview for Men's Health, that 14 percent of the 4,000 individuals he surveyed claimed to have one. Another study that featured approximately 5,000 people revealed that almost half of the individuals who were asked about their "favorite fetish" had feet on the top of the list. So clearly, even if it's not spoken about openly or regularly, foot fetishes are pretty common out in these streets.
And just what is the fascination with feet, especially in a sexual sense? Those reasons run the gamut too. Some therapists say that it pulls in a submission aspect to sex. Because a lot of people find feet to literally be "below them", when the person with the fetish is able to subdue their partner in some way via feet play, it makes them feel more dominant and powerful. From a medical perspective, because there are well over 7,000 nerve endings in each of our feet, incorporating feet into sexual activity can potentially intensify orgasms (although, there are also studies that say it's easier to have orgasms with socks on so…there's that). Still, another theory is, because feet are covered up a lot of the time, those who have a foot fetish feel as if they are closer to their partner when both individuals have their feet exposed in each other's presence. Then there are the folks who don't have a clue why they like feet as much as they do.
Back in my sexually active days, I was definitely down for giving foot rubs. A few men did do some pretty impressive toe-sucking too (shout out to Aquariuses and my fellow Geminis on that one). But again, if feet never came into play in the bedroom, I definitely wouldn't have lost any sleep—or orgasms—over it. But after reading another fascinating reason why some people have this kind of fetish, I might just consider bringing more foot action into the equation, whenever I decide to hop back on the, umm, horse.
Have You Ever Had a Footgasm Before?
Out of all the reasons why people would be into feet, there is really only one that has me sold. It wasn't until several months ago that I was even aware that something like what I'm about to share even existed too. Have you ever heard of a footgasm before? It's literally when your feet are stimulated to the point where you climax. From what I've read, it's rarer than most other kinds of orgasms, but if you want to try to have one, this is what you do:
Have your partner put some warm massage oil in their hands. Then they should take one of your feet and, with the oil on their fingertips, they should gently-yet-deeply massage the soft part of your skin that is right beneath your toes and right above the arch of your foot. As they rub that area, it will not only help to relax your body, but it will send signals to your brain that will stimulate your genital region.
If they do this for about 10 minutes or so, while you might not experience a full-blown orgasm, what you do stand a great chance of is becoming so aroused that when you do have sex, your orgasms will be more intense and last longer. Feet are a reigning sexual pressure point, after all.
To me, what all of this boils down to is if you've got a foot fetish, it's nothing to be bashful about. It is quite evident that you are among friends. Oh, and if you're seeing someone who has one, try and keep an open mind. For those of us who aren't into feet in this way, it might seem a little odd, but if you can get a foot massage or possibly even an orgasm out of it, heck girl…why not?
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Featured image by Shutterstock
- Foot Fetish: How Common Is It? What Causes It? An Expert Explains. ›
- Why Some People Are Turned on By Feet - VICE ›
- What Is a Foot Fetish? We Asked Experts to Explain | Health.com ›
- Everything You Want to Know About Foot Fetishes, Explained | Allure ›
- Foot Fetishes: 8 FAQs About Why It Happens, Ways to Play, More ›
Different puzzle pieces are creating bigger pictures these days. 2024 will mark a milestone on a few different levels, including the release of my third book next June (yay!).
I am also a Professional Certified Coach. My main mission for attaining that particular goal is to use my formal credentials to help people navigate through the sometimes tumultuous waters, both on and offline, when it comes to information about marriage, sex and relationships that is oftentimes misinformation (because "coach" is a word that gets thrown around a lot, oftentimes quite poorly).
I am also still super devoted to helping to bring life into this world as a doula, marriage life coaching will always be my first love (next to writing, of course), a platform that advocates for good Black men is currently in the works and my keystrokes continue to be devoted to HEALTHY over HAPPY in the areas of holistic intimacy, spiritual evolution, purpose manifestation and self-love...because maturity teaches that it's impossible to be happy all of the time when it comes to reaching goals yet healthy is a choice that can be made on a daily basis (amen?).
If you have any PERSONAL QUESTIONS (please do not contact me with any story pitches; that is an *editorial* need), feel free to reach out at email@example.com. A sistah will certainly do what she can. ;)
Exclusive: Gabrielle Union On Radical Transparency, Being Diagnosed With Perimenopause And Embracing What’s Next
Whenever Gabrielle Union graces the movie screen, she immediately commands attention. From her unforgettable scenes in films like Bring It On and Two Can Play That Game to her most recent film, in which she stars and produces Netflix’s The Perfect Find, there’s no denying that she is that girl.
Off-screen, she uses that power for good by sharing her trials and tribulations with other women in hopes of helping those who may be going through the same things or preventing them from experiencing them altogether. Recently, the Flawless by Gabrielle Union founder partnered with Clearblue to speak at the launch of their Menopause Stage Indicator, where she also shared her experience with being perimenopausal.
In a xoNecoleexclusive, the iconic actress opens up about embracing this season of her life, new projects, and overall being a “bad motherfucker.” Gabrielle reveals that she was 37 years old when she was diagnosed with perimenopause and is still going through it at 51 years old. Mayo Clinic says perimenopause “refers to the time during which your body makes the natural transition to menopause, marking the end of the reproductive years.”
“I haven't crossed over the next phase just yet, but I think part of it is when you hear any form of menopause, you automatically think of your mother or grandmother. It feels like an old-person thing, but for me, I was 37 and like not understanding what that really meant for me. And I don't think we focus so much on the word menopause without understanding that perimenopause is just the time before menopause,” she tells us.
Photo by Brian Thomas
"But you can experience a lot of the same things during that period that people talk about, that they experienced during menopause. So you could get a hot flash, you could get the weight gain, the hair loss, depression, anxiety, like all of it, mental health challenges, all of that can come, you know, at any stage of the menopausal journey and like for me, I've been in perimenopause like 13, 14 years. When you know, most doctors are like, ‘Oh, but it's usually about ten years, and I'm like, ‘Uhh, I’m still going (laughs).’”
Conversations about perimenopause, fibroids, and all the things that are associated with women’s bodies have often been considered taboo and thus not discussed publicly. However, times are changing, and thanks to the Gabrielle’s and the Tia Mowry’s, more women are having an authentic discourse about women’s health. These open discussions lead to the creation of more safe spaces and support for one another.
“I want to be in community with folks. I don't ever want to feel like I'm on an island about anything. So, if I can help create community where we are lacking, I want to be a part of that,” she says. “So, it's like there's no harm in talking about it. You know what I mean? Like, I was a bad motherfucker before perimenopause. I’m a bad motherfucker now, and I'll be a bad motherfucker after menopause. Know what I’m saying? None of that has to change. How I’m a bad motherfucker, I welcome that part of the change. I'm just getting better and stronger and more intelligent, more wise, more patient, more compassionate, more empathetic. All of that is very, very welcomed, and none of it should be scary.”
The Being Mary Jane star hasn’t been shy about her stance on therapy. If you don’t know, here’s a hint: she’s all for it, and she encourages others to try it as well. She likens therapy to dating by suggesting that you keep looking for the right therapist to match your needs. Two other essential keys to her growth are radical transparency and radical acceptance (though she admits she is still working on the latter).
"I was a bad motherfucker before perimenopause. I’m a bad motherfucker now, and I'll be a bad motherfucker after menopause. Know what I’m saying? None of that has to change. How I’m a bad motherfucker, I welcome that part of the change."
Gabrielle Union and Kaavia Union-Wade
Photo by Monica Schipper/Getty Images
“I hope that a.) you recognize that you're not alone. Seek out help and know that it's okay to be honest about what the hell is happening in your life. That's the only way that you know you can get help, and that's also the only other way that people know that you are in need if there's something going on,” she says, “because we have all these big, very wild, high expectations of people, but if they don't know what they're actually dealing with, they're always going to be failing, and you will always be disappointed. So how about just tell the truth, be transparent, and let people know where you are. So they can be of service, they can be compassionate.”
Gabrielle’s transparency is what makes her so relatable, and has so many people root for her. Whether through her TV and film projects, her memoirs, or her social media, the actress has a knack for making you feel like she’s your homegirl. Scrolling through her Instagram, you see the special moments with her family, exciting new business ventures, and jaw-dropping fashion moments. Throughout her life and career, we’ve seen her evolve in a multitude of ways. From producing films to starting a haircare line to marriage and motherhood, her journey is a story of courage and triumph. And right now, in this season, she’s asking, “What’s next?”
“This is a season of discovery and change. In a billion ways,” says the NAACP Image Award winner. “The notion of like, ‘Oh, so and so changed. They got brand new.’ I want you to be brand new. I want me to be brand new. I want us to be always constantly growing, evolving. Having more clarity, moving with different purpose, like, and all of that is for me very, very welcomed."
"I want you to be brand new. I want me to be brand new. I want us to be always constantly growing, evolving. Having more clarity, moving with different purpose, like, and all of that is for me very, very welcomed."
She continues, “So I'm just trying to figure out what's next. You know what I mean? I'm jumping into what's next. I'm excited going into what's next and new. I'm just sort of embracing all of what life has to offer.”
Look out for Gabrielle in the upcoming indie film Riff Raff, which is a crime comedy starring her and Jennifer Coolidge, and she will also produce The Idea of You, which stars Anne Hathaway.
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Have you ever been in a relationship with someone and felt so deeply connected to them? Everything about the relationship was intense – good or bad? Then you might be in a part of a soul tie.
The concept of a soul tie binds individuals on a level beyond a relationship's physical and emotional aspects; it’s more than a mere connection. You can form a soul tie with anyone – lover, friend, colleague, etc.- but we are discussing romantic partners for this article. Think of you and your partner as an intensely burning flame. The flame can burn passionately to light the relationship’s way or chaotically burn everything in its path. Either way, it leaves an indelible mark on the souls involved.
A soul tie should not be confused with the term “soulmate.” The main difference is that a soul tie can be positive or negative, while a soulmate is a mutual, harmonious connection. Unlike a soul tie, a soulmate relationship is generally characterized by mutual understanding, support, and shared values.
However, the more we learn about soul ties, the more it becomes evident that they are not monolithic; they vary in nature and intensity. As someone who has experienced a negative soul tie, it is crucial to discern whether they contribute positively to personal growth or hinder you from flourishing.
If Your Soul Tie Is Positive
A positive soul tie creates a deep and affirming connection between individuals. One key indicator of a positive soul tie is effective communication. If you’re experiencing a positive soul tie, a shared understanding fosters open and honest dialogue, contributing to a sense of connection and support.
Mutual growth is another hallmark of a positive soul tie. When individuals in a relationship encourage each other's personal development and evolution, it signifies a positive and uplifting connection. This mutual support leads to an environment where both parties can thrive individually and together, contributing to the overall health of the soul tie.
Emotional security is a crucial element in identifying a positive soul tie. In such connections, individuals feel a deep sense of trust and comfort with each other. This emotional security forms a stable foundation for the relationship, allowing both parties to express vulnerability and foster a strong, positive bond. These three indicators—effective communication, mutual growth, and emotional security—underscore the positivity inherent in a healthy and affirming soul tie.
If Your Soul Tie Is Negative
A negative soul tie manifests as a detrimental and draining connection between individuals. One clear sign of a negative soul tie is the presence of emotional turmoilwithin the relationship. When the connection becomes a source of constant distress, causing emotional upheaval and hindering personal development, it indicates a negative soul tie.
Codependency is another red flag for a negative soul tie. In such connections, individuals may become overly reliant on each other, impeding their ability to thrive independently. Codependency often leads to unhealthy dependencies and can result in a toxic dynamic that hinders both individuals' growth and well-being.
A lack of effective communication is a third indicator of a negative soul tie. When there is a breakdown in communication, misunderstandings and unresolved issues can fester, contributing to a strained and unhealthy connection. In negative soul ties, the absence of open and honest dialogue can perpetuate a cycle of negativity and prevent the resolution of underlying issues. These three indicators—emotional turmoil, codependency, and poor communication—point to the negativity associated with an unhealthy soul tie.
Putting Out The Fires And Breaking Your Soul Tie
Unfortunately, my deep, intense connection only caused destruction. And despite the obvious red flags, it took a minute before I broke the connection. Why? Because I was addicted to the relationship, we both were. But it is possible to break a soul tie if and when you are ready because if you are not, pretending you are when you are not is a waste of your time.
Breaking a soul tie requires intentional and purposeful actions. Establishing clear and firm boundaries is a fundamental step in severing the connection. By limiting contact and emotional engagement with the person involved, individuals can gradually weaken the tie and create space for personal growth.
Seeking professional support is another effective strategy to break a soul tie. Guidance from therapists or counselors provides valuable insights and coping strategies. Professional assistance can help individuals navigate the emotional challenges associated with breaking a soul tie, offering a structured and supportive environment for healing.
Redirecting energy toward personal growth is important in breaking free from a soul tie. Engaging in activities that promote individual well-being and create a sense of independence allows individuals to refocus their attention on their own growth and development. This redirection of energy is essential for breaking the emotional bonds of a soul tie and moving towards a healthier, more fulfilling life.
The last step I advise everyone to go through is the mourning period. My partner and I did our song and dance for years before I walked away. And I would be lying if I didn’t say that I mourned our relationship while I healed.
Recognizing the presence and nature of a soul tie in your relationship is crucial to understanding its impact on your well-being. Whether positive or negative, the intensity of a soul tie can shape the course of your personal growth and happiness. Breaking free from a negative soul tie demands intentional efforts, from setting clear boundaries to seeking professional support. Redirecting energy toward personal growth and allowing oneself a necessary mourning period are vital steps toward healing and liberation from the intricate ties that bind.
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Feature image by JD Mason/ Unsplash